The West Ham United winger should have gone to the tournament ahead of the Manchester City wide man this summer and that is now more obvious than ever.
When England coach Roy Hodgson chose his squad for this summer’s European Championships the uproar among West Ham United fans was understandably intense, with the omissions of Mark Noble and Michail Antonio particularly baffling.
Now, three matches into England’s campaign, the latter can count himself even more unlucky not to have made the tournament, with Raheem Sterling looking woeful against both Russia and Wales, before being dropped to the bench against Slovakia.
That is no real surprise for those who watched Sterling struggle last season, finishing the campaign with just six goals and two assists in 31 Premier League matches, his last meaningful contribution coming in early March.
In contrast Antonio ended the season on fire, scoring six goals in his last 15 appearances of the season and proving to be a superb option both on the wing and as a full-back for Hammers boss Slaven Bilic.
Antonio was everything Sterling was not; a winger who knew exactly how to use his pace to devastating effect and one who both scored and set up opportunities on a regular basis.
But when it came to Hodgson’s big call, the West Ham player was overlooked, only to watch his replacement run down blind alleys and make the wrong decision time and again in the final third.
Sterling is still young enough to iron out the obvious deficiencies in his game, but at 26 Antonio is the finished product and while he may not have been the obvious or fashionable choice he would have been the right one.
That is becoming clearer with each England performance; it is just a shame for Antonio that while Hodgson showed bravery in picking Marcus Rashford, he did not do the same with one of the Hammers’ star performers last season.